What is an open bite?
An open bite is an orthodontic concern where the top and bottom teeth do not properly make contact. In most cases, the back molars will touch but the front teeth will not close. An open bite is best treated during early development in children. Open bites may make speaking and chew difficult for your child.
What causes an open bite?
Open bites may be the result of skeletal development but more commonly are caused by sucking habits. Children who participate in sucking fingers or the thumb during the early development of the teeth and jaw. Tongue thrusting is another oral habit that can cause an open bite.
How can I prevent my child from developing an open bite?
Children who suck their fingers should be encouraged to stop the habit while their smile is still developing to prevent further damage to the alignment of their bite. Stopping your child from tongue thrusting or sucking their fingers can allow the jaw to continue growing normally and may reduce the need for orthodontic treatment and prevent potential speech delays, jaw damage or misalignment of the teeth.
What are the treatment options for an open bite?
While it is never too late to address orthodontic concerns, open bites are best addressed as early on in oral development as possible. Dr. Ami Barakat offers early evaluations in children with developmental orthodontic concerns. Dr. Barakat provides two-phased solutions and comprehensive treatment plans to address the underlying functional issues in growing smiles.
Treatment options for open bite include:
- Oral surgery to correct skeletal issues
- Phased treatment
- Orthodontic appliance
For children with a developing open bite early intervention is key to successful results and minimizing the impact on their dental and social health. Early intervention allows for behavioral and phased therapies that can help your child form a beautiful, balanced smile.
Schedule a Dental Exam Today
We recommend that children come in for an evaluation around age 7 and offer comprehensive care for both children and adults with an open bite. To schedule a consultation for you or your child, contact us at (613) 927-9818 or request an appointment online.